Explore The Ancient Bagan Capital City

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Bagan ancient city have been the hottest spots on the tourism map of Myanmar over the past few years. The sharing of two young travelers to these amazing destinations might be useful to you before you starting your journey. It surely helps you understand the culture, tradition, religion, or even the local residents.  Let’s take a look!

Let’ s make a visit to the fairy land of Bagan

Have you ever imagined waking up in the early morning in a place that is surrounded by thousands of ancient temples and gilded pagodas? You might consider it as nothing but a fairy tale, mightn’t you?
Myanmar – The land of the Buddha has long been a popular destination for tourists from Vietnam. However, it has not been a top – ranked tourist spot for many reasons.

The first reason that needs to be mentioned is the high expense. With the same budget, you could definitely make a visit to countries whose tourism has been developed in the region. In addition, Myanmar is lack of nightlife activities and entertainment options as those of the neighboring Thailand. The inconvenient transportation is also worth mentioning. Moreover, this country does not “possess” as many charming beaches as Vietnam.

Nevertheless, if you spend time “analyzing” and making a specific plan, you will probably find the journey to Myanmar quite easy and the expense affordable. Let’s think of getting up in the early morning in the tranquil and peaceful atmosphere of ancient temples and pagodas, greeting the stunning sunrise in the highest tower. Thus, you definitely find your travel rewarding. Coming Bagan - Myanmar to experience such amazing things.

After 8 hours of traveling by bus, we got to the bus station of Bagan - the ancient capital or the city of thousands of temples at 6 a.m. Bagan was originally a flat but deserted land. In other words, the soil is no longer fertile. Observing the scenery along the road, we just saw bushes,  palm trees, peanuts, sesame,.. that locals planted on small hills. Noticeably, that the ancient Bagan greets the dawn early, so the golden sun bathes the whole city at 6 a.m. Thus, you surely feel the tranquil and peaceful atmosphere of the local daily life. 

There was one thing interesting that the carriage driver was so good at English that he invited us to get to the center of Bagan by carriage. The price that he offered was quite cheap, 6,000 kyat (about 6$), while the taxi charge was 2,5$ higher, 8,000 Kyat (about 8,5$). We decided to travel by carriage that is highly recommended o by other travelers. Ironically, we committed a big mistake and faced up to the discomfort because we had traveled by coach in 8 hours, then experienced sitting on the carriage in an hour with an “empty stomach”. How ‘’cool” we were!

Bagan is separated into two areas, namely Newbagan and Oldbagan. The more preferred one by tourists is Oldbagan with thousands of large and small temples. Interestingly, most temples are at the shape of a pyramid, of which some of them are glitteringly gilded. In addition, tourists might be “overwhelmed” by four golden statues of 3-4 meters high in some pagodas. How amazing!

Although it was at rainy season, the weather in Bagan remained sultry. Therefore, we visited temples at 3 p.m to avoid that annoying weather. We had a chance to watch the “heart – melting” sunset in the ancient Bagan, then, we fully understood the reason why other tourists did highly recommend that experience.  The image of the sun disappearing behind temples and sinking into the west has miracles to mesmerize visitors, make them have a crush on it right away. Luckily, we did see the stunning rainbows because of some rain passing through the mountains on that day.

Characterized by thousands of temples, the local daily life in Bagan is not bustling. In the morning of the second day in this amazing land, we visited a monastery nestled at of Bagan's highest mountain in which we definitely held panoramic views of the charming Bagan (as the landlord suggested). However, the weather wasn’t fine at all, it’s rainy in the whole morning. Luckily, the driver took us to the forest of palm trees that we did saw in the early morning of the first day.

Featuring a palm tree field, Bagan has been famous for specialties made of palm trees such as palm sugar, palm wine, palm juice, handicrafts made of palm leaves, etc. The point is that they are all priced at a very “reasonable” price, 1,000 Kyat (over 20,000 VND). In addition, we enjoyed the tasteful and fragrant roasted soy beans, peanuts, and sesame. We also engage in the palm oil processing process by leading the white goat around a manual machine.

We did make a visit to Taung kalat monastery located on the mountain. The monastery itself was named after an extinct volcano called Popa. The monastery firstly captures the attention of visitors by the anti-slipped tiled floor (because visitors have to take off their shoes when going around) and the roof. Moreover, if it’s rainy, a group of people will clear the water on the floor (I remembered to tip a few hundred Kyat to thank them). It’s worth mentioning that this monastery is home to many monkeys that are very naughty, greedy, and cunning. My hat was taken away in just a few minutes by these guys, so I had to buy candy for them to "redeem" the hat. How “cool” they are.

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Location Old Bagan, Myanmar (Burma)


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